Knowing Suffering Deeply

How is your relationship with suffering?  In other words, what is your relationship with your body and your mind?

The nature of the body and the mind is not controllable and will not stay forever.  Hence, suffering embedded in the body and the mind.  If we try to run away from suffering, we are not living in the body and the mind at the present moment.  The truth is… we cannot run away from the body and the mind.  Otherwise, who will live our life?  No one else can do it, except ourselves.

Suffering is our greatest teacher, because without suffering, we will not understand true happiness.  Without accepting the true nature of our existence, peace is not possible.  When we suffer, like Thay Thich Nhat Hanh once said, we should return to ourselves and take care of the suffering like a mother taking care of a sick child with tenderness.

When we know suffering clearly without taking it personally, we become free.



I am not sure if any blogger has ever experienced this before. There are certain periods in a year that my creativity will hibernate. In those periods, I just slow down and run out of inspiration. I feel that I have to hide and hibernate so that I have more experiences to reflect on.

Anyway, I just came out of my hibernation today. 🙂

The Happiest Toddler on the Block

I’d like to recommend a book written by a pediatrician called Harvey Karp. This book is packed with a bunch of clear and easy to follow techniques to raise a respectful, happy and strong toddler.

I have been working on how to cultivate good habits in Bella without yelling, spanking or any demeaning ways. This book suggested a fun and easy way to manage toddler’s behaviors by building respect and love between parents and children.

I have been using the first technique called FFR and Toddlerese for a while. It reduces a lot of conflicts and battles betwee my little one and I. FFR is the fast food rule, which means when talking to the kid, we need to acknowledge her feelings by repeating what she was expressing in 10 seconds. When the kid calms down, we can state what we want her to do and give her an option to choose from.

So let’s say Little Johnny wants ice cream before dinner, but mommy says no. And he starts throwing things. His mommy can kneel down until a little bit lower than his eye level. Then she says, “Johnny just says ‘ice cream, ice cream now’. But mommy says, ‘no ice cream now. Then Johnny feels mad… Really mad.” She can stomp her feet a few times to show the proper way to express anger. When Johnny calms a bit, his mommy says, “But no no… We don’t eat ice cream before dinner. Let’s eat dinner now. Do you want fried rice or noodle soup?”.

The more I practice, the easier this way of communication gets. I strongly recommend it to other moms. 🙂

No Self

I felt enlightened by a conversation that I had with my mentor. She is a Buddhist nun who used to be a medical doctor. I asked her how to refresh my mindfulness practice and manage my negative emotions better. She said, “Emotions do not belong to you.” 

“When people talk, it’s just sounds. And we are sensing and listening to these sounds. Self is a delusion. When we feel threatened, this delusion gets threatened. When we feel angry, this delusion gets angry. Anger is Nama, not yours or mine.”

I felt relieved and less guilty after listening to the noble truths. 🙂 Hope they will help you too.

Embracing the blue today

Sometimes when I have been trying so hard not to be blue, feeling the blue can be relaxing. It is like surrendering to not trying and not striving to be different. I am embracing the blue today.

Humility- The Main Ingredient of Happiness

What is humility? Humility is an attitude towards life. It is the absence of self-centeredness even you have a blissful life. It is a feeling of gratitude and compassion towards everyone, including the less fortunate ones. 

It is a main ingredient of happiness because without humility we cannot appreciate the things we have in life. So we need to teach our children to be humble by thanking those people and all other living things who support their life. As Chinese always believe, don’t forget the root of our life. 

English translation: Never forget the root of the heart; Happiness and freedom will follow.

The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom

I feel so accomplished after reading a novel again. It was written by Mitch Albom, my favorite writer. It’s a story about Father Time, the first person counted time on Earth, who was granted to live eternally. He realized this was an imprisonment rather than a blessing. To get out of this pergutary, he had to meet two people, one who wanted too much time and another who wanted too little time. It’s a nice book about how to be here and now. 


The Miracle Morning

 I just finished reading the book called The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod. I followed the 6-minute-miracle morning exercise and it really jump start my every day with a good mood! Ok so these are the things that I have been doing in the first 6 minutes of a day.

1. One minute silence (sitting meditation)

2. Set good intentions (be a kind, compassionate and patient teacher)

3. Do some stretching and power walk

4. Hydrate (drink 2 cups of warm water)

5. Send loving kindness to everyone and be grateful to what I have

6. Journal for a minute

I feel much alert and powerful after doing these activities in the morning. I just feel calmer and more purposeful throughout a day. Let me know if this work for you!


Three Minutes of Silence

When the students entered the classroom, they were chatty, pushing each other and ran around  for a while. We could feel that they were not ready to learn yet. They were very excitable. What should we do?

An easy way to draw back their attention is to practice three minutes of mindful breathing. If the students are younger than 10 years old, one minute maybe good enough. While practicing mindful breathing, the children can sit upright with eyes closed so that they won’t feel drowsy. They can observe the rising and falling of the tummy or put their attention on their noses. After three minutes of mindful breathing, especially in the last period, students felt more energized and refreshed. 

Reference of picture:

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